What is the correct height for vanity lights?

Written by kelly marzka
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What is the correct height for vanity lights?
Vanity lighting hung at the correct height adds beauty and functionality to a bathroom. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

When hanging vanity lights in a bathroom, finding the best height is important so your light fixtures appear practical, attractive and proportionate to their surroundings. While there's no exact height standard for vanity lights, there are a few simple steps you can follow to find the best height for vanity lights in your bathroom.

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Vanity Lights Above the Sink

Most homes feature vanity lights hung directly above your bathroom mirror, centred above the sink. These can be one-, two-, three- or four-light fixtures. The best height for these light fixtures is directly above your bathroom mirror, leaving an inch or two of space between the top of your mirror and the bottom of your light.

Vanity Lights Surrounding the Mirror

While vanity lights above the mirror are most common, vanity lights surrounding the mirror are preferred. This light option reduces shadows on your face because light hits it from two directions. Hang vanity lights surrounding the mirror at your approximate eye level, making sure you can't see the bulb at that height. If you can, raise the fixture slightly until the bare bulb is not visible.

Standard Heights

If following these guidelines still leaves you stumped, or you don't have your mirror purchased yet and must rough in your light fixtures now, you can follow standard height guidelines. For lights above the sink, install fixtures at about 85 inches above the floor. For lights hung surrounding a mirror, install the fixtures at about 6 feet above the floor.

Other Considerations

If your lights will be hung above the mirror, ensure they're hung high enough so they don't impede opening and closing of the medicine cabinet if your mirror doubles as a medicine cabinet. Try to purchase and hang your mirror before installing lights, to prevent expensive and unnecessary electrical work to move the fixtures later if your mirror is larger or hangs higher than you expected.

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